Most people believe Local Property Tax is unfair and should be scrapped

Most people want the property tax abolished, with large numbers of homeowners expressing the view that the tax is unfair .

urvey findings indicate widespread confusion about who is liable to pay the tax.

The Taxpayer Sentiment Survey results come as the deadline for those who pay the Local Property Tax by cheque, debit card, credit card or in cash is just days away.

The Local Property Tax (LPT) is due by next Thursday for these people. Those who pay by direct debit will have the tax for this year deducted from January 15.

Those who pay the tax in a lump sum from their bank accounts through what Revenues calls an annual debit instruction will have their accounts debited from March 21.

A survey of 1,200 taxpayers by found that eight in 10 people want the LPT abolished.

lmost half of those surveyed believe the tax is unfair as it does not take account of household income. The amount of tax levied is based on valuation bands for homes.

Others told the surveyors they do not feel the LPT tax revenue is being well spent. The money goes to local authorities to fund local services.

Only one in five people would vote for the LPT to be kept in its current form.

And the survey revealed widespread confusion among the public on who is liable for the tax.

The survey found four out of 10 people were wrong when asked who has to pay the tax.

Almost one in five incorrectly believe LPT does not need to be paid if a property is more than five years old.

More than one in 10 wrongly believe owners of business properties should pay the tax.

And 5pc incorrectly believe that renters are liable for the LPT. said owners or joint-owners of residential properties are liable for the LPT, regardless of when the property was built.

However, residential properties that are unsuitable for use as a dwelling and are also unoccupied are not liable and there are also some properties which are exempt from the LPT.

Consumer tax manager with, Marian Ryan, said: “Despite the high LPT compliance rate, with 95pc of those liable for the tax paying it, most people want the property tax to be abolished.

“The LPT was introduced in 2013 at the tail-end of the austerity years. Those years are long gone, so surely the LPT should go too.”

She said many people find the tax inherently unfair.

“It takes no account of their household income or ability to pay the tax,” she said.

Ms Ryan said that pensioners whose only source of income is the state pension must still pay this tax, as must any low-income earners who own properties.

“This is hugely unfair given the high price which so many of these people will have likely paid to buy a home, and the fact that many of them will also have paid high income taxes throughout their lives.”

The tax expert said that some of today’s property owners will also have paid large amounts of stamp duty when initially buying their home, particularly if they bought homes in the early 2000s.

She claimed this means they are effectively being taxed on the property twice.

“Given the huge cost of housing in this country, and the pressure that so many households are under due to the cost-of-living crisis, surely it is time for the Government to consider abolishing the LPT or making the LPT system fairer,” Ms Ryan said.

She said that widespread confusion around who is liable for the tax must be addressed.

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